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Feminisation has consequences: III
Shifting away from solidarity
This one can be adumbrated thusly: For evolutionary reasons, women evince less solidarity than men, especially with other women. This has consequences, given the feminisation of institutions in developed countries.
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The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.
Gloria Steinem may have written a book with that title, but a retreat from confronting annoying truths has been a feature of the increasing feminisation of society.
Feminisation does not refer to a society’s gender-egalitarianism. It describes a shift towards female-typical behavioural patterns and elevation of female-typical concerns. This includes a movement from teams to cliques and an increasing focus on achieving status-through-propriety over status-through-prestige.
Feminising solidarity away
As progressive politics became more feminised, it became less concerned with working-class needs. It undermined solidarity with the poor, focusing instead on identities that wealthier people can deploy without shame. You can now become an actual princess (by marriage) and still play the marginalised-identity game.
Vulnerable women—in prisons and elsewhere—suffer costs from this loss of solidarity. Think, for example, of female identifying predators transferred into women’s prisons or sexual offenders from inconvenient migrant origins preying on women and girls in care or in under-policed (lower-class) neighbourhoods.
The indifference of the UK feminist and progressive elite to Pakistani Muslim grooming gangs preying on (often underage) girls is striking. Progressive-feminist establishment figures can go from zero-to-outrage in 280 characters yet show little or no public outrage over what groups of Muslim men are doing. They’re demonstrably much more interested in policing discourse, to the extent of actively obscuring what’s been going on.
This is (elite) women being so not the solidarity sex.
The contrast with public horror in late Victorian Britain over working-class girls sold into forced prostitution is stark. This far greater public outrage was not despite Victorian Britain being a more patriarchal—specifically more masculinised—society but precisely because it was so. It displayed much more solidarity.
A more masculinised society is more likely to defend lower-status women than is a more feminised society. One can see this in both the above historical case and in transactivism’s ability to predate on poor women in prisons and shelters.
At its crudest, it’s the difference between protecting the sexual and fertility resources of the group versus antipathy to (female) romantic rivals. It’s the difference between male-typical teams (and rules) focused on group protection and cohesion versus female-typical focus on emotional investment in resource-beneficial connections—for which low status women are not useful. Hypergamy is a recurring feature of human societies precisely because men tend to focus on signs of fertility and women on signs of status and access to resources.
There are identifiable consequences to increasing female participation in organisations and professions. We are a significantly cognitively dimorphic species, and increases shift the balance of personality traits, and patterns of behaviour, within an organisation or profession. It changes emotional and social dynamics. And, despite the self-serving self-congratulation of feminism, not always for the better.
This is so given that (heterosexual) men are primed to take notice of the emotions of women. While the sexual and physical incontinence of men produces crime, emotional incontinence among women can produce corrosive social dysfunction, potentially on a large scale.
No issue displays the lack of female solidarity more thoroughly than does Trans.
The Transcult is biological males mobilising status-seeking “mean girl” patterns among women to trash women’s rights. To make women’s sport into a mechanism for mediocre males to displace extraordinary women. To allow “female-identifying” predators into women’s prisons and women’s shelters. To systematically invade, and so eliminate, women-only spaces that exist precisely because women are the physically weaker sex and some men are predators.
The last is a pattern that comes from biology. Men are physically stronger and the small-gamete sex (so face fewer risks from sex) with flatter trait distributions, so a larger “tail” of extreme aggressors. This pattern is not abolished by declaring oneself a woman. Mind you, predators do game gender-identity-through-self-ID.
The Roman notion that galli (m-t-f priestesses of Cybele) could only enter female spaces if they’d had their bits cut off was biologically sound. The contemporary notion that self-ID is enough is classic bullshit as a stronger social signal than truth.
Female lack of solidarity leading to the trashing of women’s rights is not a new thing. During the Christianisation of the Roman Empire, Christian women—often poor or servile—seeking salvation and supportive of Christianity’s feminising of sexuality went along with posh women being stripped of access to contraception, abortion, and divorce, or the capacity to enter the professions.
A key appeal of Christianity to women was that it feminised sexuality, requiring sex to only happen within a committed relationship (marriage). The Sexual Revolution—where women gained unilateral control of their fertility and so defected en masse from the Christian moral order—masculinised sexuality. Sex is now pagan cathartic release.
Rome may have been an unusually gender-egalitarian civilisation, with, for example, strong laws on sexual consent. But it also had a masculine sexual culture and worshipped success, deprecating losers to a degree rarely seen. This is one area where Islam is closer to Roman patterns than is Christianity. Part of the call of the muezzin to prayer is hayya ‘ala-l-falah: “hasten to success”.
The Roman idea of “social work” was to round up the homeless and have them belt each other to death in the arena for citizens’ entertainment. Kindness was to let them live but dump them outside the city limits.
With the Sexual Revolution’s masculinising of sexuality—a masculinising that dating apps have intensified—the classic young male embarrassment at virginity has emerged among teenage girls. Part of the appeal of “trans” and “non-binary” is that it allows teenage girls—especially socially awkward or emotionally-conflicted teenage girls—to opt out of a competitive sexual market with which they are uncomfortable.
Masculinised sexuality creates a competitive, status-focused, sexualised culture that encourages lack of empathy for failure—see contempt for “incels”—also part of a re-paganisation of social mores. It’s led to a great deal of sexual unhappiness, too. Many women find they do not enjoy the emotional aftermath of sex without commitment*. Meanwhile, men find themselves either locked out of the sexual market or that signals around commitment are disastrously scrambled.
As science populariser Will Storr has pithily argued—echoing the cultural-shift arguments of Deirdre McCloskey, Joel Mokyr, and others—Europe’s technological break-out was based on the elevation of prestige-through-discovery over the confines of propriety. This enabled disruptive discoveries that created the modern world’s mass communications and mass prosperity, including women’s ability to control their own fertility.
More recently, the Western world has reverted to trumping the prestige of discovery with demands from a new, highly intolerant—and feminised—propriety.
The turning point can be precisely dated: on 15 November 2014, when a rocket scientist who’d supervised the very clever thing of landing a probe on a comet (“like landing a fly on a moving bullet” according to one mechanical engineer) was publicly humiliated for his choice of shirt. The prestige of his scientific and technical competence was savagely and publicly subordinated to the impropriety of his shirt.
The process of subordinating discovery to a zealous, controlling and increasingly viciously intolerant propriety is a direct consequence of the feminisation of institutions. It is the politics of the “mean girl” clique writ large, scaled up via social media.
Across society, there has been a process of replacing masculinised (including tomboys) prestige-based discovery-and-competence teams with feminised (including sissies) propriety-conformity cliques. This means replacing a robust culture of free speech and thought (captured by the schoolyard ditty “sticks and stones may break my bones, but names can never hurt me”) with a far more intolerant and controlling public culture of words are violence and that’s offensive.
“Words are violence” is the claim that hurt to my emotions is as serious as hurt to my body. It’s a classic feminised claim: women evolved to worry that emotional aggression may be followed by physical aggression. “Silence is violence” is a demand for totalitarian conformity. “That’s offensive” is a modern re-creation of the highly conformist gossip trap.
Denying people the authority to speak based either on their emotions (“hate speech”) or the emotions they induce in others (“that’s offensive”) is a feminising pattern. Polling has persistently shown women to be more in favour of restricting speech than men.
Male chauvinists predicted that letting women into the academy and professions would see downplaying of logic and evidence in favour of sentiment, plus the elevation of emotion and feelings. That has happened to the point of caricature.
It’s not at all a coincidence that Post-Enlightenment Progressivism (“wokery”) is the first intellectual movement whose key theorists are female. It breaks the historical pattern of female theorists being either absent or unusual. If, however, one views what is created as a new religious sensibility—a result of the spiritual being poured into the social—the contrast, though real, is less stark.
Wokery is a set of movements committed to moralised hierarchies based on narrow identities that are conspicuously and functionally hostile to broad social solidarity and that elevate the celebration of “proper” feelings, of felt experience, over evidence, consistency in reasoning and wrestling with the structure of reality.
Women, due to care in pregnancy and for infants, tend to have more disgust responses than men. See any all-male group-house for confirmation. In physically safe and hygienic societies, disgust moves to the linguistic and virtual realm and creates moral hysteria over words.
Teenage girls in particular are prone to moral hysterias. They have higher emotionality and agreeability, and they have adolescent (so underdeveloped) personal identities. Puberty hitting at younger and younger ages has also aggravated these vulnerabilities in screen-connected societies.
The notion that it has become difficult to define woman—on the basis of avoiding hurting the feelings of a tiny minority—when millions of years of evolution operated on being able to tell male from female is a parody of feminisation elevating feelings and sentiment over evidence and reasoning.
The moment of disorienting fear politicians, senior bureaucrats, and candidates for judicial office experience over the question “what is a woman?” displays this social corrosion clearly.
If we are going to be the first societies in human history not to have presumptive sex roles—which means men and women routinely working together—while continuing to sustain functioning technological and democratic polities, then, just as civilised order requires men to control their physical and sexual incontinence, so full participation in public and professional life is going to require women to control their emotional incontinence.
And most of the policing must come from within the same sex.
The notion that any difference between male and female patterns somehow manifests male inadequacy is female-self-valorising nonsense.
Much of the current crisis of trust in our institutions—including failure to protect freedoms and the increasing divorce from duty to the general public—is due to increased cowardice within such institutions. Statistically, the simplest way to raise the average level of courage—and to increase solidarity—in our institutions would be to sack all the women. Women tend to be inherently more physically and emotionally cautious and less team-oriented than men. In male-dominated institutions, men are less concerned to impress women and more concerned with impressing other men.
Contemporary publishing has proved to be particularly cowardly, even engaging in Orwellian rewriting of authors’ past works (even without the author’s knowledge, so being manipulative sneaks), largely because it is so feminised.
While there are plenty of courageous women—and cowardly men—women are systematically higher in emotionality and agreeability than men. Which is to say, prone to feelings-protecting-conformity, driven mainly by aversion to emotional threat.
The more feminised our institutions become, the more networked cowardly conformity (and the less social solidarity) is selected for. Adhering to such conformist cowardice becomes a way to impress women who wish to preserve their networked emotional comfort.
If you select for capacity but not character you end up with neither character nor (useful) capacity.
From foraging societies onwards, human societies have gone to great efforts to create (effective) male teams so as to transfer risks away from, and provide resources for, child-rearing. Unsurprisingly, testosterone is the courage hormone.
The difference between farming and pastoralism is one of the great enduring divides in human history. Raiding pastoralists thought farmers were weaklings who could not defend their own. Farmers regarded pastoralists as thieving, raping, enslaving, murderers. In accordance with stereotype accuracy, they were both correct.
A large part of the tension between Christianity and Islam, is that Christianity represents the sanctification of Roman (farming) patterns (single-spouse marriage, no cousin marriage, female consent for marriage, testamentary rights, suppressing kin groups, law is human) while Islam represents the sanctification of pastoralist patterns. Hence, between the Elbe and the Urals, farming polities went Christian and pastoralist polities went Muslim.
Those pastoralist polities were then conquered by a Muscovite state that was farming in religion but pastoralist-derived in politics. The tyrannical murderousness of Ivan Grozny was shocking for Christian-farming polities but not particularly remarkable for pastoralist cultures that gave us pyramids of skulls.
The perennial problem that pastoralists posed to farming societies—prior to the arrival of gunpowder-armed infantry—is that pastoralists were much better at creating effective warrior teams than were farmers. Farmers instead relied on scale (farming can generate ten to 20 times as many calories per acre in arable land as pastoralism can in grasslands), walls and warrior elites, who often had pastoralist origins, to fend off the pastoralists. Which worked, until it didn’t. See various waves of Scythian, Hun, Arab, Berber, Turk, Mongol, Turco-Mongol, Jurchen and Comanche conquests.
Once farming societies got mass gunpowder weapons, they brought their numbers to bear much more effectively on the battlefield. Pastoralist warrior-team power was smashed —most dramatically via the conquering expansion of the Muscovite state. Farmer vengeance has echoed across subsequent centuries, including in the Rwandan genocide.
Faced with the corrosive effects of feminisation, there are three possible outcomes.
(1) We start having adult conversations about downsides of feminisation and it becomes widely accepted that the quid-pro-quo for holding positions of responsibility is restraining emotional incontinence. I am not aware of any case in history of a society doing so after destructive social effects of feminisation have been experienced, but we are in a situation of great evolutionary novelty. It does, however, require understanding that social solidarity matters.
(2) The corrosive effects of feminisation continue (teams being undermined and replaced by cliques; systems with gossip-at-scale; prestige with gossip trap propriety; inconvenient facts with congenial bullshit; courage with conformist cowardice), to the point of some level of social collapse. Which—given the level of global interdependence—would be catastrophic.
(3) Men solve their coordination problem (e.g. through some religious revival or other coordinating belief system), decide that they are over the destructive-harpy effect and increasingly dysfunctional institutions, and use the fact that they are physically stronger and the solidarity sex to put women back in a social box.
The normal pattern when corrosive feminisation is experienced, is for (2) to lead to (3) via conquering outsider strong-male-teams. Given the West’s military dominance, and Russia, China’s, and Iran’s deep demographic and other problems, conquest by outsider male teams does not look likely.
As for insider male teams, after the 1914-1918 Great War, aggressive Communism (Bela Kun in Hungary, Leninist violence in Italy, revolutionary agitation and leftist assassination in Spain, a rising Stalinist KPD in Weimar Germany) led to the Horthy, Mussolini, Franco and Hitler regimes respectively which—whatever else they were—were effective at mobilising male teams.
* Tension between sexual and emotional desires may be, for evolutionary reasons, particularly acute in human females.
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